A Mexican restaurant that doesn’t serve tacos, quesadillas and other Old El Paso party-starters? Most eaters would call that weird. Sam Ward, however, is calling it Más.
Meaning “more” in Spanish, Más is a six-week pop-up dinner series that sees Ward reprise the food he was cooking during his El Publico days. And just as his El Publico menu championed lesser-seen dishes such as beef mogo-mogo balls, cuttlefish tostadas and fried crickets, Ward will be looking beyond the predictable for his latest brush with Mexican cuisine.
“It’s getting away from the stereotype that Mexican is just street or party food and honouring its more delicate nuances,” says Ward. “You look at a Mexican cookbook and you don’t recognise half the ingredients and the techniques because it’s its own entity.”
Here’s what to expect: each (limited capacity) Más event will feature a five-course menu with dishes gleaned primarily from Oaxaca, Yucatán and Quintana Roo, home of the popular tourist destination, Cancun. Ward is keeping tight-lipped about menu specifics – “we’ll be focusing on the regional specialties and the kinds of things people eat in their day-to-day,” he offers – but in the spirit of the event, will be deferring to Spanish dish and ingredient names rather than risk losing something in translation to English. Factor in the corkage-free BYO and the prospect of one of Perth’s more prodigious chefs being let off the leash and it really does sound like an opportunity too good to miss.
Más runs every Tuesday from November 8 to December 13. The first Más dinner will be held at The Mantle, 1 James Street, Fremantle. Tickets are $65 per person (corkage included) and are available online.